Maternal vaccination in the third trimester of pregnancy is now the preferred strategy for protection of infants in the “immunity gap” between birth and three-months of age. This strategy was however implemented in the absence of evidence from clinical trials, and many questions about the details of its effects remain.  

In this seminar Prof. Peter McIntyre (Director, NCIRS) gives an overview of the background on maternal immunisation against pertussis and present some recent evidence from the UK and California. Dr Nathan Saul (Epidemiologist, Vaccine Preventable Diseases at NSW Health) presents data on effectiveness from a NSW case-control study conducted by all public health units in 2015-16.

Video resources

Talk 1: Maternal immunisation against pertussis – background and current evidence by Prof Peter McIntyre, NCIRS


Talk 2: NSW infant pertussis case-control study
Protective And Risk Factors For Pertussis Infection In Infants In NSW: A Case-control Study To Estimate Post-implementation Effectiveness Of Maternal Pertussis Vaccination


Professor Peter McIntyre has been Director of NCIRS since 2004. He trained as a paediatrician, specialising in infectious diseases (FRACP 1986), and is also qualified in public health medicine (FAFPHM 1992). His PhD in the epidemiology of invasive Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) disease in the School of Public Health, University of Sydney, was awarded in 1995. He has a national and international reputation in the epidemiology of vaccine-preventable diseases and in vaccinology, particularly pneumococcal disease and pertussis, with numerous speaker invitations and a long history of work with the World Health Organisation, including current membership of the Immunisation and Vaccine Implementation Research Advisory Committee.

Dr Nathan Saul joined NSW Health in 2015 as the Vaccine Preventable Disease Epidemiologist within the Communicable Disease Branch. He has worked on the maternal pertussis program, measles elimination, participates in national working groups on meningococcal disease and has led the analysis of the maternal pertussis effectiveness study conducted through the NSW Health Protection Leadership Group.


Last updated December 2018